What to know before getting your first tattoo

Getting a tattoo for the first time is no doubt an exciting experience, but it can be hard to know what exactly to expect. The experience is different for everyone. It depends on the person’s pain tolerance, location of the tattoo and the artist they go to. Each artist tattoos differently and has their own techniques, so of course it will feel different depending on how they tattoo.

That being said, there are some areas of the body that are considered to be more painful than others. In general, arms and legs are considered to be some of the less painful areas for tattoos, while ribs and any area close to the bone are considered to be some of the most painful areas.

Of course, where someone decides to get their tattoo is up to them, but it is good to have a general idea of what level of pain to expect. Make sure to research the area you want to get tattooed and see what levels of pain most people experience during their tattoo.

Outside of the pain, it is extremely important to research an artist prior to getting tattooed. You want to make sure that you like the artist who you’re getting tattooed by. Many tattoo shops and artists have social media accounts like Instagram to promote their work. Check out their digital portfolios and make sure you like their style.

Make sure to also check out reviews of the shop and see how other people’s experiences were there. If you still aren’t sure you want to make the commitment to that shop or artist, try stopping by the shop and checking it out before booking an appointment.

It is also important to note that good work will cost money. Tattoos are permanent. Be ready to put forth the money for quality work the first time. Cover-ups or laser removal surgery will cost more than getting something you’re happy with to begin with.

Getting a tattoo isn’t always the fastest process. Depending on the detail and how big it is, the tattoo could take a mere 10 minutes or upwards of 10 hours. Make sure to eat well and stay hydrated before your tattoo, regardless of how little or how long the appointment may be.

With longer appointments, you’ll be able to take breaks throughout the day. Make sure to bring some snacks and water with you if you’re getting a bigger piece done that will take longer.

One of the most important things to note is that you cannot move while getting a tattoo. You need to be able to stay still, otherwise it will make it harder for your artist to complete the tattoo and you may put yourself at risk of messing it up. That being said, it can be advised to get something smaller and in a less painful area for your first tattoo so that you can get used to the feeling of being tattooed.

Proper aftercare for tattoos is also extremely important. Your artist will go over the specifics that they want you to follow to help your tattoo heal. Some artists like to use products such as Saniderm, which is a medical bandage, while others may give you different instructions. Listen to whatever your artist recommends and if you have any questions about the healing process, don’t hesitate to contact your artist! They will be willing to answer any questions you may have to help insure it heals properly.

Ultimately, it is just important to make sure that you do your research and are happy with what you’re getting before you start the actual tattoo. As long as you listen to your artist, you should be okay and you’ll get to walk away with some sweet art on your body!

Recent Articles

Fifth social justice dialogue explores women of color experiences in healthcare

Roselyn Macias brings her experience navigating health services as a trans woman to the school year's fifth social justice dialogue.

How to fight shelter-in-place boredom

Seven activities to keep you occupied during California's shelter-in-place order.

Book Review of “There There” by Tommy Orange

Tommy Orange's novel "There There" is a captivating, eloquent journey.

The Beach

we drive to the placewhere water kisses the landsmelling salty airexcited to let the sunbeamskiss our face This EarthOur...

Related Articles